Permitted obstructions

Waterfront public access areas shall be unobstructed from their lowest level to the sky except that the obstructions listed in this Section shall be permitted, as applicable. However, no obstructions of any kind shall be permitted within a required circulation path, except as specifically set forth herein.

(a)        In all areas

(1)        Trees and other plant materials, including grasses, vines, shrubs and flowers, watering equipment, arbors, trellises, observation decks, retaining walls;

(2)        Seating, litter receptacles, drinking fountains, other outdoor furniture;

(3)        Fountains, reflecting pools, waterfalls, sculptures and other works of art, temporary exhibitions;

(4)        Guardrails, bollards, gates and other protective barriers, in accordance with Section 62-651;

(5)        Lights and lighting stanchions, flag poles, exercise and other recreational equipment;

(6)        Kiosks and open air cafes

Where a kiosk is provided, it shall occupy an area no greater than 150 square feet, including roofed areas. A kiosk may be freestanding or attached on only one side to a building wall. Any area occupied by a kiosk shall be excluded from the definition of floor area, and may only be occupied by news or magazine stands, food stands, flower stands, bicycle rental stands, information booths or uses accessory to permitted WD uses, as permitted by the applicable district use regulations or as modified by Section 62-29.

Open air cafes shall be permanently unenclosed except that they may have a temporary fabric roof. No kitchen equipment shall be installed within an open air cafe. Kitchen equipment may be contained in a kiosk adjoining the open air cafe.

Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 32-41 (Enclosure Within Buildings), outdoor eating services or uses occupying kiosks may serve customers on a waterfront public access area through open windows;

(7)        Structural landscaped berms and associated flood gates, including emergency egress systems that are assembled prior to a storm and removed thereafter, provided the height of such berm does not exceed the flood-resistant construction elevation required on the zoning lot or five feet above the lowest adjoining grade of the waterfront yard established pursuant to Section 62-332 (Rear yards and waterfront yards), whichever is higher;

(8)        Temporary flood control devices and associated permanent fixtures, including emergency egress systems that are assembled prior to a storm and removed thereafter. Permanent fixtures for self-standing flood control devices shall be flush-to-grade, and shall be permitted obstructions within a required circulation path.

(b)        In screening buffers

(1)        Paved entrances to buildings fronting upon a screening buffer, including awnings and canopies over such entrances, seating located within 42 inches of an adjacent paved area, bicycle racks within six feet of the sidewalk of an open accessible street or within 10 feet of an upland connection;

(2)        Service equipment necessary for maintenance of waterfront public access areas or the functioning of adjacent structures such as watering equipment, sheds for tool storage, electrical transformers or other mechanical or electrical service devices, provided all such equipment covers no more than 100 square feet in any location and has a maximum height of 10 feet. Such obstructions shall be screened in accordance with Section 62-655 (Planting and trees);

(3)        Exhaust vents located on building walls fronting on the screening buffer, only if the bottom of such vent is a minimum of 10 feet above the adjacent ground level and projects no more than four inches from the building wall.

(c)        Beyond 20 feet of the shoreline

Tot-lots, playgrounds, dog runs, public telephones, toilets, bicycle racks.

(d)        In Community District 1 in the Borough of Brooklyn

Any amenity accessory to docking facilities for ferries or water taxis shall be considered a permitted obstruction only where such amenity is certified by the Chairperson of the City Planning Commission in conjunction with the docking facility, pursuant to Section 62-813 (Docking facilities for ferries or water taxis in certain waterfront areas).